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Construction will shortly begin on the long-anticipated International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor—a machine that, if it works, promises to solve most of the world’s energy problems for the next 30 million years. Howard M. Georgi ’68, a Harvard physics professor, sat down for a brief chat about how and whether ITER will actually work as well as its possible economic and political implications.
Nico J. Schwalbe ’14 opens the door of a tiny room in the Lowell basement filled with tangled cords, and I take a seat on an amp by the drumset. This is the rehearsal space for L.A. Jeff, a student band Schwalbe helped found. We are soon joined by Sam J.J. Newmark ’14, who greets me and immediately starts unpacking his guitar.
The Visual and Environmental Studies chair’s office in the Carpenter Center looks as one might expect it to: stylish and modern, with soft light spilling in through expansive windows, minimalist white walls, glass tables, shiny metal details, and pops of color here and there. Robb Moss, the current chair, sits in the corner of one of the square black leather couches, and rests his cheek in his left hand.
Upon meeting me, Sam Cooper ’14 of Hot Breakfast offers me a plate of oysters from Eliot dining hall and informs me that I am his Datamatch. This might be a conflict of interest.
As if the threat of an impending D.T.R. after every encounter wasn’t terrifying enough, Valentine’s Day has reared its cloyingly colored head once again. V-Day is one of those tricky subjects that’s easy to brush aside and even rant about when it’s several pages away on your calendar. But when it’s finally here?
B.J. Novak ’01, an actor and funnyman best known for playing Ryan in “The Office,” stopped by the Brattle Theatre earlier this week to discuss his new book, “One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories.” Before going on stage, Novak sat down with FM to talk about Harvard, 20th-century poetry, and the romantic ideal of Elvis.
Not ready to enter the real world after college? Don’t worry; that’s what grad school is for! But it’s far from cheap. FM did a little math and even went undercover, started working on some applications to find out what attending some of Harvard’s graduate and professional schools might cost you. (All numbers as of Academic Year 2013-2014 and taken from university websites.)
When Valerie J. Piro ’14 was Currier HoCo chair, she couldn’t storm the freshman dorms on Housing Day like everyone else—she had to hand off the housing letters to a friend and watch as the rest of the group ran in. Dianna Hu ’15, a computer science concentrator, can’t use the back door of the science center—she has to enter through the front despite where she’s coming from, as there is no automatic button at the back for her to press. No matter how much she may want to, Chanel E. Washington ’15 can’t attend social events in certain houses; if the common rooms aren’t accessible, then she’s out of luck.
The strength of Harvard’s alumni network today rests on the relationships formed between students while they’re undergraduates. As freshmen, students often take their first steps into the Yard with little concrete advice on how to navigate the academic and social scene on campus. That’s where upperclassmen “mentors”—friends, siblings, role models in organizations—come in to help spell out the “dos and don’ts” of Harvard. These mentors—both current Harvard students and recent alumni—have helped shape the course of their younger peers’ college experiences, leaving a mark on Harvard that goes beyond their own four years in Cambridge. FM set out to investigate one strand of these upperclassmen-freshmen mentor relationships, beginning with current freshman Priscilla K. Russo ’17 and following the network through to Ryan A. Peterson ’08.
Maura D. Church '14
In conversation at Harvard, be it over a dining hall meal, a problem set, or a drink, it is not rare to learn that your fellow interlocutor is an athlete. Of the many responses or follow-up questions that might arise, a natural one is whether the person walked on or was recruited.
“I was always thinking, ‘Is there something inexpensive and not too crazy that we can do to make the Yard friendlier for a public school kid from Ohio?’” says Michael R. Van Valkenburgh, Graduate School of Design professor. The consensus answer was to purchase a number of bright Luxembourg chairs and place them throughout the Yard.
Lester Brown: "I’m often asked, am I an optimist or a pessimist? I like to think I’m a realist. We’re going to have to move very fast if we want to prevent climate change from spiraling out of control."
Antonio R. Villaraigosa sits in an armchair at the Institute of Politics, his hair slicked back. The former Mayor of Los Angeles and 2012 Chairman of the Democratic National Convention, now a visiting fellow at Harvard's Institute of Politics, is ever the genial politician as he sits down with Fifteen Minutes.